Internet-Use Policy

Public access to the Internet is available to users of The Malverne Public Library on selected computers in both the reference area and the children’s department. Priority will be given to Village residents in accordance with the Nassau Library System Plan of Service. The Library is making the Internet available as an informational and educational resource in support of our role as this community’s information and lifelong learning center.

Consistent with our mission and the professional principles of public librarianship, the Internet Use Policy affirms the safeguarding of First Amendment rights, intellectual freedom, equity of access, confidentiality of information about users and their use of all library resources including electronic, and individual responsibility. The Malverne Public Library affirms the following principles and users rights as delineated in the American Library Association’s “Access to Electronic Information, Services, and Networks: An Interpretation of the Library Bill of Rights:

  • Electronic information, services, and networks provided by libraries should be readily, and equitably accessible to all library users.
  • Libraries and librarians should not deny or limit access to information available via electronic resources because of its controversial content or because of personal beliefs or fear of confrontation.
  • Information retrieved or utilized electronically should be considered constitutionally protected unless determined otherwise by a court with appropriate jurisdiction.
  • Responsibility for, and any restriction of, a child’s use of the Internet rests solely with his or her parents or legal guardians.”

The Malverne Library assumes no responsibility for any damages, direct or indirect, arising from its connections to the Internet. The Library makes no guarantee, either expressed or implied, with respect to the quality or content of the information available on the Internet. Not all the information available via the Internet is accurate, current or complete. Users are encouraged to be good information consumers by evaluating the validity of information accessed via the Internet.

Users are cautioned that ideas, points of view and images can be found on the Internet which are controversial, divergent and/or inflammatory. The provision of access does not mean or imply that the Library endorses or sanctions the content or point of view of any of the information or commentary which may be found on the Internet.

The Internet offers access to a wealth of information that can be personally, professionally and culturally enriching. Library staff have attempted to identify specific starting points for searches and links to sources on the Internet which are consistent with the Library’s mission and roles. But, because the Internet is a vast and unregulated information network, it also enables access to ideas, information, images and commentary beyond the confines of the Library’s collection, mission, selection criteria and collection development policies. Because of this and the fact that access points on the Internet can and do change often, rapidly and unpredictably, the Malverne Library cannot protect individuals from information and images which they might find offensive and/or disturbing.

Because the Malverne Public Library computers on which the public can access the Internet are located in public areas that must be shared by library users of all ages, background and sensibilities, individuals are asked to consider this when accessing potentially controversial information and images. Library staff cannot consistently and effectively monitor the public’s use of the Internet. Yet the Library reserves the right to require individuals to discontinue the display of information and images which may cause disruptions to Library operations.

Users are cautioned that, because security in an electronic environment such as the Internet cannot be guaranteed, all transactions, files, and communication are vulnerable to unauthorized access and use and, therefore, should be considered public. Moreover, users are prohibited from dispensing information and images, which violate New York State Criminal law.

Child Safety on the Internet
Parents or guardians are responsible for the Internet information selected and/or accessed by their children and must sign an Internet release form authorizing their children’s use of Library Internet access computers. Children who use the Internet unsupervised may be exposed to inappropriate or disturbing information and images. Parents are encouraged to discuss the use of the Internet in relation to family values and boundaries with their children and to monitor their children’s use of the Internet.

User Responsibilities
All users of the Internet are expected to use this library resource in a responsible and courteous manner, consistent with the purposes for which it is provided, and to follow all Internet-related rules, regulations and procedures established for its use including, but not limited to, those of the Library.

Responsible, courteous use of the Internet includes:

  • Recognizing that the Internet, like all of the Library’s information sources, must be shared and used in a manner which respects the rights of others and refrains from activity that prevents others from using it.
  • Using the Library’s Internet resources for educational, informational and recreational purposes only.
  • Refraining from using the Library’s Internet resources to conduct a business or commercial enterprise, enterprise, or engaging in commercial activity, such as the distribution of advertising.
  • Refraining from illegal or unethical use of the Internet.
  • Respecting intellectual property rights by making only authorized copies of copyrighted, licensed or otherwise-controlled software or date residing on the Internet.
  • Respecting the privacy of others by not misrepresenting oneself as another user; by not attempting to modify or gain access to files, passwords, or data belonging to others; and by not seeking disallowed access to any computer system, via the Internet.
  • Refraining from damaging or altering the setup of the equipment used to access the Internet at the Library.
  • Refraining from the deliberate propagation of computer worms and viruses.
  • Refraining from the transmission of threatening, harassing or abusing language and images.

Compliance With Library Policy and Guidelines
In addition to this specific policy, the Library’s general guidelines for the use of all public-access computers govern the use of the Internet in the Library. Violation of the policies and regulations that govern the use of the Library’s Internet resources may result in suspension or loss of the privilege to use the Library’s resources, including computer Internet access. Illegal activity involving the Library’s Internet resources will be subject to prosecution by the appropriate authorities.

Staff Assistance
Staff will assist library users in getting started on the Internet. However, the Malverne Library cannot guarantee that Internet-trained staff will be available to assist users at all times the Library is open. Regrettably, the staff is not able to offer extensive explanation about the Internet or personal computer use or provide in-depth training. Time permitting, staff will try to answer specific questions about the Internet and offer suggestions for effective searching. Staff can also provide information about Internet training opportunities and Internet books and manuals.

The Library is not able to offer e-mail accounts to library users at this time.

Adopted by the Malverne Library Board of Trustees November 1999.

Addendum to the Internet Policy
Each user is personally responsible for the choice of Internet sites visited. The use of any information obtained by using the library’s Internet connection is at the user’s own risk and includes unauthorized disclosure, use and dissemination of personal identification or personal identification information regarding minors.

Parents, legal guardians or caregivers will be responsible for supervising their children’s behavior and use of the Internet. This includes hacking or other unauthorized activities entered into by minors while using library computers.

Approved by the Library Board of Trustees November 2004.